Re: Military in or out?

From: Gordon Worley (
Date: Sun Feb 25 2001 - 20:46:43 MST

At 9:46 PM -0500 2/25/01, Brian Phillips wrote:
> If an superintelligent AI could not be utterly guaranteed to be loyal it
>would not be funded.
> I will go so far as to say the military programmers would deliberately use
>less than optimal AI rather than run ANY risk that the "tool" would be

Well, duh! I think that the military is more interested in clones.
This is bad, but think about /Star Wars/ and the Storm Troopers.
While the movies leave it up in the air as to where they come from, I
have always suspected that they are spawned humans. Now, why not
just use robots with AIs controlling them? Well, AIs get smarter,
but humans only get so smart. Now, I'm sure George Lucas wasn't
thinking of this when he made the films, but it does make sense.

The thing that Singulatarians really have to watch out for is the
military threat to the creation of SIs. The reason being that an SI
could eliminate a threat like the military before the military could
scramble a single jet. If you want, compare this to the military's
struggle to keep crytopgraphy out of the hands of the masses, only
with much higher stakes. Fortunately, SIs and the Singularity have
an advantage, in that they will develop faster than the military can
react to. By the time they realize what is going on, it will be too

To that extent, going back to the first post in this thread, it would
probably be a good idea not to let the military in on SI development.
In fact, we should probably encrypt messages about the creation of an
SI (not the theoretical discussions we have now but the practical
ones that will take place in the weeks and months before one comes
into existance). When the first SIs come into existance, whether via
super AIs or dynamic posthumans, it will be essential that they have
the upper hand or the element of surprise. In other words, let's let
the cat out of the bag before someone has a chance to tie the strings

Now, Eliezer may come back and tell me and everyone else why this is
not, but I would not put it past the military or any part of the
government to create a dystopian society just to prevent SIs and the
upset of power that they will bring. Let's face it: this has more
or less been the story of Latin America (someone comes along with a
good way to run a country, and, bam, the US military creates a
dystopia, or as close as they can get to one, to make sure that
nothing changes, even if it would be for everyone's net benefit).

Gordon Worley
Public Key:  C462 FA84 B811 3501 9010  20D2 6EF3 77F7 BBD3 B003

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